Peter Altmaier, Federal Minister for Economic Affairs and Energy and Commissioner Thierry Breton

Peter Altmaier, Federal Minister for Economic Affairs and Energy and Commissioner Thierry Breton

© BMWi/Andreas Mertens

Today, at the invitation of Economic Affairs Minister Peter Altmaier, the Ministers of Industry of the EU Member States are holding a video conference to discuss important aspects of the green transition in the industrial sector. The meeting is held under Germany’s Presidency of the EU Council. The European Commission is being represented by Commissioner Thierry Breton.

Said Economic Affairs Minister Altmaier: “A resilient EU industrial sector with the ability to compete is the backbone for economic recovery from the coronavirus pandemic. This is why, in addition to instant crisis relief, we must now also create the right framework to allow us to make the transition to a green and digital economy. We also need more investment in forward-looking technologies. The Council Conclusions on industrial policy represent a clear contribution to a strong, modern, and competitive industrial sector in Europe.”

The challenges faced by industries highly reliant on basic materials and by energy-intensive industries will be an important point on today’s agenda. These industries, in particular, need to successfully harness the economic potential in taking the technological lead on low-carbon technologies that will pave the way for climate neutrality. As is the case for the entire industrial sector, greater innovation, pan-European cooperation on key enabling technologies, and a level playing field are key requirements for this to work.

The Council Conclusions drawn up in preparation to today’s meeting between the Member States are entitled: “Towards a more dynamic, resilient and competitive European industry: Council adopts conclusions”. In the context of the upcoming review of the EU Industrial Strategy, which has been announced by Commission President von der Leyen, these Council Conclusions serve as an important tool for the Member States to position themselves with regard to key economic-policy issues.